Sunday, December 06, 2009

Red or Green: Caliente?

Sunday wasn't nearly as chilly at the previous day, though a bit of snow remained in north-facing shady spots in Elephant Butte and Truth or Consequences. We returned race equipment to the club shed and to Dumbledore's garage and hauled Carguy's boat out of the water. Winds were almost non-existent, so I paddled to boat from the marina to the courtesy dock next to the Rock Canyon boat ramp while Carol Anne and Cornhusker prepared the trailer. After everything was ready, we had one obstacle with which to cope: a thick layer of sand had washed down the boat ramp, making it shallower than it should be. To deal with this, I used a rope tied to the rear of the trailer to drag it into deeper water as Carol Anne let the trailer roll down on the rope connecting it to the truck. With hard tugging, we were able to drag the trailer through the thick sand into deeper water.

After a break for lunch or a snack, we returned to the marina and saw that a nice breeze had arisen, so we rigged Carol Anne's Etchells USA 125, Black Magic. Unfortunately, just as we were raising the mainsail, the winds piped up enough to stir up whitecaps just outside the harbor. As we sailed out of the marina, the boat picked up enough heel that we all had to hike a bit and work the controls to flatten the boat more. With the weather getting rougher and gustier, and no other boats out on the water, we decided to make a short trip of it and return to the marina rather than get spray-soaked and chilled. I took the helm for the docking and we managed to get the boat put away and the sails rolled and stowed in spite of the breeze, which was probably a steady 15 mph gusting beyond 25 mph.

Then we turned our attention to boat chores, cleaning up Cornhusker's boat from its previous day's use be me as the race committee boat and tackling a tangle of non-optimally-run control lines in the "spaghetti factory explosion" region under the forward console. Under Carol Anne's direction we managed to particularly improve the run of the jib fine tune lines and get them much more out of the way of the mast moving and fraculator lines.


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